The Col de la Biche (Golet de la Biche) is a mountain pass (1,310m) in the Ain department in France. It’s the lesser-known mountain pass compared to the Col du Grand Colombier, which is only 12km away to its south.
The Col de la Biche is popular among cyclists for its scenic route and challenging gradient.
There are two ways to climb the Col de la Biche.
- From Gignez (northeast)
- From Artemare (southwest)
Starting from Gignez is the shorter but steeper option, while Artemare is longer but slightly easier. Many cyclists combine the Col de la Biche and the Col du Grand Colombier into a single ride.
Starting point : Gignez
Gignez is located northeast of Col de la Biche in the French Alps.
The climb up from here is very hard. The gradient rarely dips below 9% for the first 9km. So, pace yourself properly.
Once reaching the summit, you can continue to descend towards Artemare. Alternatively, you can descend for around 7km and turn left onto D120 to climb up to the Col du Grand Colombier.
|Col de la Biche from Gignez|
|Strava segment||Col de la Biche from Gignez|
Starting point : Artemare
Artemare is located to the southwest of Col de la Biche. The climb up from here is longer but easier. The first 11km rarely exceeds 5%, but the last 6km averages more than 9%.
Alternatively, you can turn right onto D120C about 6.5km from Artemare, and climb up to the Col du Grand Colombier.
|Col de la Biche from Artemare|
|Strava segment||Col de la Biche from Artemare|
Col de la Biche in the Tour de France
Col de la Biche is an Hors Catégorie (HC) climb from Gignez and a Category 1 climb from Artemare. It featured in the Tour de France twice in 2017 and 2020.
In 2020, the second-last climb on Stage 15 finished atop the Col du Grand Colombier. Eventual General Classification winner Tadej Pogacar won that stage, and defending champion Egan Bernal cracked on the last climb.